'Vocation' and 'pastoral work' are the two key terms that determine the character and activity of the Church. Vocational chaplaincy belongs to the nature of the Church and should be one of its main aspects. It illustrates the idea of the Church as a Mother, constantly opening itself to God's intention to give birth to new life within it. The vocational character of the Church is expressed in the very etymology of the word 'Ecclesia', which means 'the congregation of the chosen' (by Jesus). John Paul II called the Church mysterium vocationis. The mystery of ecclesiastical vocation is being revealed and fulfilled in pastoral work, which is an organized activity. Its main aspects are preaching the Word of God, administering of the sacraments, living in a religious community and being witnesses of Christian life. Thus the very idea of pastoral work is dei ned by its vocational character.
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